Interplanetary Species Society (ISS) was a new project by artist Jonas Staal that consisted of a large-scale installation in the form of an alternative biosphere in the Reaktorhallen, the former underground nuclear facility of Stockholm. The biosphere contained assemblies of humans, ammonites, meteorites and proletarian plantae, proposing new forms of interspecies co-existence between human, non-human, and more-than-human subjectivities.
Entering the age in which humans will become an interplanetary species, ISS challenged the neocolonial and extractivist logics at play in the corporate terraforming endeavors of Space X or Trump’s export of ultranationalist in the form of a new “Space Army.” Instead, the alternative biosphere of the ISS calls to reject the notion of space colonization in favor of “space cooperation” and proposes human species to consider themselves as “guests” instead of pioneers. As such, ISS proposes the biosphere as a space to train new forms of intra-planetary and interplanetary alliances.
Entering the age in which humans will become an interplanetary species, ISS challenged the neocolonial and extractivist logics at play in the corporate terraforming endeavors of Space X or Trump’s export of ultranationalist in the form of a new “Space Army.”
The founding assembly of the ISS took place on August 24, 2019, and explored the subjects of interplanetary infrastructure, languages and politics from the perspectives of art, political theory and science, with contributions by James Bridle, Kristine Dannenberg, iLiana Fokianaki, Vincent W.J. van Gerven Oei, Sam Hultin, Klaas Kuitenbrouwer, Charl Landvreugd, Aurélie Nyirabikali Lierman, Sven Lütticken, Felicity Scott, Anton Vidokle, and others.
ISS is a project by Jonas Staal, curated by Edi Muka. Installation by Jonas Staal in collaboration with architect Paul Kuipers and designer Remco van Bladel. Production by Younes Bouadi and Evelien Scheltinga (Studio Jonas Staal), in collaboration with the Public Art Agency Sweden and the KTH Royal Institute of Technology.
On Jonas Staal
Jonas Staal is a visual artist whose work deals with the relation between art, propaganda, and democracy. He is the founder of the artistic and political organization New World Summit (2012–) and the campaign New Unions (2016–). With BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht, he co-founded the New World Academy (2013–2016), and with Florian Malzacher he is currently directing the utopian training camp Training for the Future (2018–) at the Ruhrtriennale in Germany. Recent exhibition-projects include Art of the Stateless State (Moderna Galerija, Ljubljana, 2015), After Europe (State of Concept, Athens, 2016), Museum as Parliament (with the Democratic Federation of North Syria, Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, 2018) and The Scottish-European Parliament (CCA, Glasgow, 2018).
Jonas Staals projects have been exhibited widely, among others at the 7th Berlin Biennial (2012), the 31st São Paulo Biennale (2014), the Oslo Architecture Triennial (2016) and the Göteborg Biennale (2017). Recent publications and catalogs include Nosso Lar, Brasília (Jap Sam Books, 2014), Stateless Democracy (With co-editors Dilar Dirik and Renée In der Maur, BAK, 2015) and Steve Bannon: A Propaganda Retrospective (Het Nieuwe Instituut, 2018). His book Propaganda Art in the 21st Century is forthcoming from the MIT Press in the fall of 2019. Staal completed his PhD research on propaganda art at the PhDArts program of Leiden University, the Netherlands.